An Act To Provide Leadership Regarding the Responsible Recycling of Consumer Products
Sec. 1. 38 MRSA c. 18 is enacted to read:
§ 1771. Definitions
As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise indicates, the following terms have the following meanings.
§ 1772. Establishment of designation procedures; product designation; rulemaking
(1) The degree to which the product or product category poses an adverse impact to the environment and public health and safety;
(2) The potential for resource recovery and material conservation;
(3) The potential for energy conservation;
(4) The climate change impacts and benefits of the product or product category;
(5) Opportunities to reduce waste and toxicity;
(6) Opportunities to increase recycled content and recycling;
(7) The costs of waste management to local governments, ratepayers and taxpayers in the absence of product stewardship programs;
(8) Opportunities for existing and new businesses and infrastructure to manage the products;
(9) Opportunities to develop new industries to utilize the recovered materials;
(10) Public demand for product stewardship; and
(11) Success in collecting and processing similar products in programs in other states and countries;
§ 1773. Product stewardship program
§ 1774. Reuse or recycling requirement
If the department determines that options for reusing or recycling a product have changed, the department may require producers to amend their product stewardship programs to include reuse and recycling for that product or product category.
§ 1775. Sale of products
As of the implementation date established by the department under section 1772, subsection 2, paragraph E for the product stewardship program for a product or product category, a producer, wholesaler, retailer or other person may not sell or offer for sale that product or a product in that product category to a person in the State unless the producer is participating in the product stewardship program. A person who sells or offers for sale in the State a product shall, prior to selling that product in the State, consult the lists of compliant and noncompliant producers established pursuant to section 1780. A person is considered to have complied with this section if, on the date the product was ordered from the producer or its agent, the producer was listed as having an approved product stewardship program for that product.
§ 1776. Product stewardship plan
(1) The person submitting the plan;
(2) The producers participating in the product stewardship program; and
(3) If a stewardship organization intends to operate a product stewardship program on behalf of producers, the stewardship organization, including a description of the stewardship organization, its management and administration and the tasks to be performed by the organization;
(1) The location of collection sites or other collection services used by the product stewardship program;
(2) How unwanted products from all types of covered entities will be collected in all counties in the State and in all cities with populations of more than 10,000; and
(3) How the collection system is convenient and adequate to serve the needs of covered entities in both urban and rural areas;
(1) The location and permit status of and record of any penalties, violations or regulatory orders received in the previous 5 years by the handling, processing or disposal facilities used by the product stewardship program;
(2) A 3rd-party audit of each handling, processing or disposal facility used by the product stewardship program for any product containing hazardous substances or any of a product's components, parts, by-products or materials containing hazardous substances. The audit must include documentation of compliance with all relevant local, state, national and international laws and with the management requirements adopted for the product by the department under section 1772, subsection 2, paragraph F;
(3) The policies and procedures to be followed by persons transporting, handling, processing or disposing of unwanted products collected pursuant to the product stewardship program and how compliance with relevant local, state, national and international laws and with the management requirements adopted for the product or product category by the department will be ensured;
(4) How the products will be reused or recycled, including a description of the processing methods that will be used at each processing facility;
(5) If the department determines through rulemaking that a product is not reusable or recyclable, a waste reduction strategy for how the product will be disposed of or managed in permitted facilities appropriate to the product, including disposal or management of hazardous products, components, parts, by-products and materials in permitted hazardous waste facilities appropriate for the products, components, parts, by-products and materials;
(6) How all residuals that cannot be reused or recycled will be disposed of or managed in permitted facilities appropriate for the residuals, including disposal of or management of all hazardous residuals in permitted hazardous waste facilities appropriate for the residuals;
(7) How hazardous wastes and hazardous substances will be tracked and handled through final disposition and how safety and security will be maintained; and
(8) Best management practices used by processors and their vendors to ensure that hazardous substances and wastes are not released into the environment and do not adversely impact human health;
(1) A description of the process used to consult with stakeholders regarding the contents of the product stewardship plan; and
(2) A summary of stakeholders' comments and concerns and how those concerns were addressed.
§ 1777. Changes to product stewardship plan
§ 1778. Amendment, suspension or cancellation of product stewardship plan approval
§ 1779. Annual reporting
For the purposes of this section, "reporting period" means the period beginning January 1st and ending December 31st of the same calendar year.
(1) The person submitting the product stewardship plan; and
(2) The producers participating in the product stewardship program;
(1) The amount of unwanted products collected from covered entities through collection services in each county, including documentation verifying collection and verifying reuse, recycling or disposal of that material; and
(2) How the product stewardship program attained the performance goals and recovery rates established in the product stewardship plan or set by the department and, if the program did not attain those performance goals and recovery rates, what actions it will take during the current reporting period to do so;
(1) A list of handling, processing and disposal facilities used and the location of each facility, the weight of unwanted products processed by each processor or disposed of at each disposal facility and a description of the processes used to recycle the unwanted products by each processor;
(2) A list of subcontractors through final disposition who processed or recycled unwanted products, components, materials or by-products that contained hazardous substances and the location of each subcontractor facility;
(3) Documentation and summary results of annual 3rd-party audits conducted pursuant to section 1773, subsection 6 on each handling, processing and disposal facility used;
(4) If a product is exempt from the reuse or recycling requirement pursuant to section 1774, subsection 2, how the product has been disposed of or managed in permitted facilities appropriate to the product, including disposal or management of all hazardous products, components and materials in permitted hazardous waste facilities appropriate for the product, component or material;
(5) The fate of residuals not recycled or reused;
(6) Penalties, violations or regulatory orders received during the reporting period, if any, by each handling, processing or disposal facility that is used; and
(7) Whether policies and procedures for transporting, processing, handling and disposing of unwanted products as established in the product stewardship plan under section 1776 were followed during the reporting period and a description of noncompliance with those policies and procedures, if any;
§ 1780. Website listing of producers
The department shall list on the department's publicly accessible website all producers who are participating in an approved product stewardship program and all producers who have been identified as noncompliant.
§ 1781. Enforcement; penalties
§ 1782. Administrative costs and fees
The department may establish fees to fully recover expenses incurred by the department to administer this chapter. Fees may be charged to producers and, if fees are charged, the fees must be paid annually no later than July 1st of each calendar year. Fees collected by the department pursuant to this section must be deposited in the Maine Environmental Protection Fund established in section 351.
§ 1783. Rules
Rules adopted pursuant to this chapter are routine technical rules as defined in Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2A.
§ 1784. No limitation of municipal authority
Nothing in this chapter changes or limits municipal authority to regulate collection of solid waste, including curbside collection of residential recyclable materials.
§ 1785. Anticompetitive conduct
A producer or stewardship organization, including a producer's or stewardship organization's officers, members, employees and agents that organize product stewardship programs required under this chapter, is authorized to engage in anticompetitive conduct to the extent necessary to plan and implement a product stewardship program and is immune from liability under state laws relating to antitrust enforcement, restraint of trade, unfair trade practices and other regulation of trade or commerce for this purpose.
§ 1786. Liberal construction
This chapter, being necessary to protect public health, safety and welfare and the environment, must be liberally construed.
This bill establishes a product stewardship law under the Department of Environmental Protection.
The bill requires the department to establish procedures for identifying products that are appropriate for a product stewardship program and to designate specific products and product categories that are subject to the product stewardship program requirements. The bill also sets forth factors that must be considered by the department in making this determination, including, but not limited to, the degree to which the product poses an adverse impact to the environment and public health, opportunities for the development of business and opportunities for energy conservation and reduction of waste and toxicity.
Under the bill, producers of the designated products must participate in product stewardship programs established and paid for by the producers of the products. If a producer of a designated product does not participate in an approved product stewardship program, that producer's product may not be sold in or into the State as of an implementation date to be established by the department.
The bill requires producers of designated products to submit to the department for approval product stewardship plans and proposed changes to established plans. The bill also authorizes the department to amend, suspend or cancel its approval of a product stewardship plan and requires product stewardship programs to submit annual reports.